Reinheitsgebot: Bavarian Beer Laws

Signup for your FREE trial to The Great Courses Plus here: There are more than 8200 craft breweries in the United States. But it is a strange irony of the history of beer that, in sixteenth century Bavaria, such adulterations of brew were banned in a proclamation that still affects the industry today. TheContinue reading “Reinheitsgebot: Bavarian Beer Laws”

The “Great Olive Poisoning” of 1919

On Saturday, August 23rd, 1919 the Lakeside club of Canton Ohio held a dinner and dance to celebrate the return of Colonel Charles C Weybrecht, formerly adjutant general of the state of Ohio and most recently commander of the US 146th infantry regiment, just returned from the war in France. The party, some version ofContinue reading “The “Great Olive Poisoning” of 1919″

The Tamale Wars

Though they might not be the king of street food today, a hundred years ago Tamales dominated street corners, with tamale vendors becoming so popular that turf wars broke out. Though it was briefly impossible to avoid tamaleros, they vanished almost as quickly as they came. The history of the “Tamale Wars” is history thatContinue reading “The Tamale Wars”

Sliced Bread and the Second World War

There seems to be no agreement as to what was the greatest thing before sliced bread, we just know that many now compete over what is the greatest thing since. But, in 1943, sliced bread was about to encounter the largest war in human history. The US government ban on sliced bread in January 1943,Continue reading “Sliced Bread and the Second World War”

Betty Crocker: Marketing Icon

For a hundred years, Betty Crocker and her products have made baking and cooking easier, and her name has adorned everything from famous cookbooks to au gratin potatoes to Fruit Roll Ups. The History Guy recalls the forgotten history of a woman who built an enduring legacy – in cake.

Civil Defense All Purpose Survival Crackers

There was a time when the US Government planned to save the population from nuclear war with 20 billion crackers. The giant tins of “Civil defense All Purpose Survival Crackers” raise questions about food, history, and how long food lasts before it becomes history. The History Guy recalls the history of a famous item onContinue reading “Civil Defense All Purpose Survival Crackers”

The Surprising History of Vending Machines

Americans spend nearly $7 billion a year in vending machines. Today the machines are mostly a matter of convenience, but vending machines have a surprisingly long history, stretching all the way back into antiquity. The History Guy recalls the history of vending machines. It deserves to be remembered.

Lobster for Dinner: A Forgotten History

Today, what we call “Maine lobster” is considered a delicacy, and the further from the East coast, the more expensive it is. It wasn’t always like that. The History guy recalls the forgotten history of the changing perception of “bugs of the sea.”